Getting Started
The Process
List Requirements
Reference Packet
What Consultants are Asked


Getting Started

Access the Extramural Consultant Application via

  • Guidelines for Selecting Extramural Consultants – Defines who qualifies as a consultant as well as requirements for approval of proposed individuals and of the list in aggregate.
  • All candidates must be DCOAP approved for the proposed action.
  • For promotion candidates:
    • Office of Academic Affairs must be notified of DCOAP decision
    • CV & Grants pages must be updated in FEDS
  • For external appointment candidates:
    • Search and RTR must both be approved
  • Consultant Submission Form – optional resource for collecting required information

Extramural Consultant Process


  • Step 1 – List creation and approval: see section below for list requirements
    • Candidate and department leadership work with department faculty coordinator to compile the list of proposed consultants.
    • The list is submitted to PSOM & University leadership for review and approval. At any point, list may be returned with questions, revisions, or to reject a proposed consultant.
    • Final approval of the list is awarded by the Office of the Vice Provost for Faculty.
  • Step 2 – Templated “Pre-Contact” email sent by department to approved consultants
    • This is the only contact departments are permitted to have with consultants.
    • Candidates and department faculty cannot contact consultants during the process.
  • Step 3 - Submission of Candidate’s Reference Packet to the School: see section below for packet requirements
    • This is the LAST STEP in which the Department is involved. Remaining step is facilitated by the School. Department and candidate will not be informed of progress.
  • Step 4 – PSOM COAP solicits and manages receipt of responses. All communication with consultants, initial request and reminders, are sent by the School.
    • A minimum of six (6) letters must be received for the consultant process to be considered complete and for a dossier to move forward for review.
    • If enough responses are not received, PSOM COAP may request the department to submit an additional list of names and the process repeats itself.
    • Upon completion of the process, the Office of Academic Affairs will contact the department faculty coordinator to indicate that it is time for the submission of the candidate’s full dossier.

List Requirements

Up to Eighteen (18) Consultants can be submitted in the initial list.

  • Candidates nominate one (1) to three (3)
  • Department leadership nominate eleven (11) primary consultants and four (4) alternates who will be contacted only as needed due to lack of responses from primary proposals.
  • Faculty coordinators review the proposed list to ensure it meets all requirements as stated in the guidelines and that all necessary information has been submitted.
  • For each consultant the department must include a statement describing what they are known for and the breadth of their reputation ("Nationally/Internationally recognized for contributions to/making advances in (State field of study).”) with 2 additional supporting facts demonstrating reputation and impact (discoveries, awards, society leadership roles etc.). Bullet list or brief narrative are both acceptable.

Quick Chart of General Requirements
Refer to the consultant guidelines for more detailed information on consultant qualifications.

Extramural Consultant List Criteria
Candidate Proposed Consultants Should include up to 3 nominations. (Minimum 1)
Department Proposed Consultants Must include 11 nominations for primary list made without consulting the candidate
Should include 4 alternate nominations made without consulting candidate

Criteria for all consultants across sections and all lists

(initial list and any additional lists that may be requested)

Max of 2 collaborators, co-authors, colleagues, or co-editors
Must be at the rank of Professor with the exception of a max of  2 Associate Professors
(only for appointment or promotion to Associate Professor)
Max of 3 international consultants
Max of 2 consultants from the same school, with exceptions of schools with multiple campuses
Max of 2 from non-academic institutions
Max of 2 emeritus professors - must still be active
No current Penn faculty; former Penn faculty must have left the university at least 5 years ago

Reference Packet

Solicited consultants are provided with a reference packet of materials about the candidate. This packet includes:

  • CV & Grants pages
    • For promotion, candidates must submit the FEDS CV & Grants pages
    • For external appointment candidates, submit applicant’s personal CV* or FEDS formatted CV & Grants pages.  *Personal CVs must include past, current, & pending grants information.
  • Candidate’s Personal Statement  
  • Reprints of 3-4 articles representative of the candidate’s work, chosen by the candidate.

What We Ask the Consultants

Depending on the track, the consultant will be asked to:

  • Evaluate the scope and significance of the candidate’s scholarly achievements and their importance within the general discipline
  • Comment upon the degree of recognition achieved in the candidate’s discipline, noting their most distinctive contributions
  • Rank the candidate relative to the leading scholars/clinicians in the same field of study and at a comparable level of professional development
  • Evaluate the candidate’s likelihood of achieving a similar faculty position and rank at the leading institutions in this discipline
  • Provide any insight on the candidate’s skill and effectiveness as a teacher and communicator
  • Provide any additional insights that may be helpful in determining whether or not to recommend the candidate for appointment/promotion